This paper makes a conceptual inquiry into the notion of ‘publics’, and forwards an understanding of this notion that allows more responsible forms of decision-making with regards to technologies that have localized impacts, such as wind parks, hydrogen stations or flood barriers. The outcome of this inquiry is that the acceptability of a decision is to be assessed by a plurality of ‘publics’, including that of a local community. Even though a plurality of ‘publics’ might create competing normative demands, its (...) acknowledgment is necessary to withstand the monopolization of the process of technology appraisal. The paper presents four ways in which such an appropriation of publicness takes place. The creation of dedicated ‘local publics’, in contrast, helps to overcome these problems and allows for more responsible forms of decision-making. We describe ‘local publics’ as those in which stakeholders from the different publics that are related to the process of technology implementation are brought together, and in which concerns and issues from these publics are deliberated upon. The paper will present eight conditions for increasing the effectiveness of such ‘local publics’. (shrink)
Idealism and relativism were designed to assess different ethical ideological views. Their relation with attitudes toward a variety of outgroups has not been previously studied. Understanding how concerns over ethical principles and consequences are related to prejudiced attitudes could provide some insight into these constructs and into the nature of prejudice. In two studies totaling 311 participants, participants completed measures on ethical ideologies, right-wing authoritarianism, and attitudes toward various outgroups. The differential predictive validities of ethical ideologies, in comparison to right-wing (...) authoritarianism, on prejudicial attitudes toward dangerous, derogated, and dissident outgroup members were examined. We found that both idealism and relativism contributed to predicting attitudes regarding outgroup members, over and above right-wing authoritarianism. As such, people’s personal moral standards and code of conduct for dealing with interpersonal problems and transgressions can partly explain their negative attitudes toward outgroup members. More research is required to determine the unique influence of ethical ideologies over other constructs previously shown to predict prejudice. (shrink)
Network models of language provide a systematic way of linking cognitive processes to the structure and connectivity of language. Using network growth models to capture learning, we focus on the study of the emergence of complexity in early language learners. Specifically, we capture the emergent structure of young toddler’s vocabularies through network growth models assuming underlying knowledge representations of semantic and phonological networks. In construction and analyses of these network growth models, we explore whether phonological or semantic relationships between words (...) play a larger role in predicting network growth as these young learners add new words to their lexicon. We also examine how the importance of these semantic and phonological representations changes during the course of development. We propose a novel and significant theoretical framework for network growth models of acquisition and test the ability of these models to predict what words a specific child is likely to learn approximately one month in the future. We find that which acquisition model best fits is influenced by the underlying network representation, the assumed process of growth, and the network centrality measure used to relate the cognitive underpinnings of acquisition to network growth. The joint importance of representation, process, and the contribution of individual words to the predictive accuracy of the network model highlights the complex and multifaceted nature of early acquisition, provides new tools, and suggests experimental hypotheses for studying lexical acquisition. (shrink)
Recent efforts by legislative officials and public health advocates to reform the US food stamp program, or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, have focused on restricting the types of foods eligible for purchase with SNAP benefits, specifically sugar-sweetened beverages. We argue that it is, in principle, permissible for the US government to enact a SNAP-specific SSB ban prohibiting the purchase of SSBs with SNAP benefits. While the government has a duty to ensure that citizens meet their nutritional needs, since SSBs provide (...) negligible nutrition, it has no obligation to subsidize them. Additionally, there is good reason to think that a SNAP-specific SSB ban would enable the government to better fulfill two other duties—improving citizens’ health and providing public services like Medicaid and Medicare in a more cost-effective manner. Still, because the costs and benefits of such a ban remain uncertain, we argue that the government should conduct well-designed pilot projects to help determine the effects of an SSB ban. (shrink)
This paper argues that “backstage” gallows humor among clinical mentors not only affects medical students’ perceptions of what it means to be a doctor but is also symptomatic and indicative of a much larger problem in medicine—namely, the failure to attend fully to the complexity and profundity of the lived experiences of illness, suffering, and death. Reorienting the discourse surrounding gallows humor away from whether or in what context it is acceptable and toward the reasons why doctors feel the need (...) to use such humor in the first place addresses this issue in a more illuminating way. (shrink)
Network science provides a set of quantitative methods to investigate complex systems, including human cognition. Although cognitive theories in different domains are strongly based on a network perspective, the application of network science methodologies to quantitatively study cognition has so far been limited in scope. This review demonstrates how network science approaches have been applied to the study of human cognition and how network science can uniquely address and provide novel insight on important questions related to the complexity of cognitive (...) systems and the processes that occur within those systems. Drawing on the literature in cognitive network science, with a focus on semantic and lexical networks, we argue three key points. Network science provides a powerful quantitative approach to represent cognitive systems. The network science approach enables cognitive scientists to achieve a deeper understanding of human cognition by capturing how the structure, i.e., the underlying network, and processes operating on a network structure interact to produce behavioral phenomena. Network science provides a quantitative framework to model the dynamics of cognitive systems, operationalized as structural changes in cognitive systems on different timescales and resolutions. Finally, we highlight key milestones that the field of cognitive network science needs to achieve as it matures in order to provide continued insights into the nature of cognitive structures and processes. (shrink)
In describing the foundations of our pedagogical approaches to service-learning, we seek to go beyond the navel-gazing—at times, paralyzing—paradoxes of neoliberal forces, which can do “good” for students and their communities, yet which also call students into further calculative frameworks for understanding the “value” of pre-health humanities education and social engagement. We discuss methods to create quiet forms of subversion that call for a moral imagination in extending an ethics of care to students as well as to the communities with (...) which they engage. While we recognize the partiality and limitations of our attempts, framing mentored service-learning in unexpected ways can help students and practitioners to understand their role within broader social, historical, cultural, and emotional contexts and encourage them to act intentionally toward the communities they seek to serve in response to this new self-knowledge. To that end, we outline an academically rigorous service-learning intervention at one of our universities. (shrink)
To assess whether and how environmental values and sense of place relate to sustainable farming practices, we conducted a study in South Kona, Hawaii, addressing environmental values, sense of place, and farm sustainability in five categories: environmental health, community engagement and food security, culture and history, education and research, and economics. We found that the sense of place and environmental values indexes showed significant correlation to each category of sustainability in both independent linear regressions and multivariate regression. In total, sense (...) of place explained a larger share of the overall farm performance. However, each indicator showed relative strengths; environmental values showed significantly higher correlation to environmental and educational practices. Furthermore the scales were complimentary, and the use of both scales greatly improved prediction of good farming practices from a multiple-impact perspective. With implications for community and environmental impacts, results suggest that a more comprehensive view of farmers’ environmental values and place connections may help illuminate individual farmers’ decisions and sustainability-related practices. (shrink)
The mining and energy industries present unique challenges to engineers, who must navigate sometimes competing responsibilities and codes of conduct, such as personal senses of right and wrong, professional ethics codes, and their employers’ corporate social responsibility policies. Corporate social responsibility is the current dominant framework used by industry to conceptualize firms’ responsibilities to their stakeholders, yet has it plays a relatively minor role in engineering ethics education. In this article, we report on an interdisciplinary pedagogical intervention in a petroleum (...) engineering seminar that sought to better prepare engineering undergraduate students to critically appraise the strengths and limitations of CSR as an approach to reconciling the interests of industry and communities. We find that as a result of the curricular interventions, engineering students were able to expand their knowledge of the social, rather than simply environmental and economic dimensions of CSR. They remained hesitant, however, in identifying the links between those social aspects of CSR and their actual engineering work. The study suggests that CSR may be a fruitful arena from which to illustrate the profoundly sociotechnical dimensions of the engineering challenges relevant to students’ future careers. (shrink)
Weiss, Propen, and Reid gather a diverse group of scholars to analyze the growing obsolescence of the human-object dichotomy in today's world. In doing so, Design, Mediation, and the Posthuman brings together diverse disciplines to foster a dialog on significant technological issues pertinent to philosophy, rhetoric, aesthetics, and science.
We consider Sussman et al. 's suggestion that auditory biases for processing low-noise relationships among pairs of acoustic variables is a preadaptation for human speech processing. Data from other animal communication systems, especially those involving sexual selection, also suggest that neural biases in the receiver system can generate strong selection on the form of communication signals.
Coaches have the potential to influence athletes’ moral development, especially at the collegiate level—a powerful period of growth in young adults’ lives. As central agents in athlete moral education, coaches’ moral development and understanding of professionalism is currently unknown. The purpose of this study was to increase understanding of the ethical professional identity development of sport coaches. In-depth interviews based on moral exemplar and moral identity development theories were conducted with NCAA Division-I collegiate head coaches in the United States who (...) were peer nominated ‘moral exemplars’. Interviews elicited themes of moral exemplarity, professionalism, and above average ethical identity development. Results can inform and improve coach education for current and future members of the profession. (shrink)
First, we explain the conception of trustworthiness that we employ. We model trustworthiness as a relation among a trustor, a trustee, and a field of trust defined and delimited by its scope. In addition, both potential trustors and potential trustees are modeled as being more or less reliable in signaling either their willingness to trust or their willingness to prove trustworthy in various fields in relation to various other agents. Second, following Alfano (forthcoming) we argue that the social scale of (...) a potential trust relationship partly determines both explanatory and normative aspects of the relation. Most of the philosophical literature focuses on dyadic trust between a pair of agents (Baier 1986, Jones 1996, Jones 2012, McGeer 2008, Pettit 1995), but there are also small communities of trust (Alfano forthcoming) and trust in large institutions (Potter 2002, Govier 1997, Townley & Garfield 2013, Hardin 2002). The mechanisms that induce people to extend their trust vary depending on the size of the community in question, and the ways in which trustworthiness can be established and trusting warranted vary with these mechanisms. Mechanisms that work in dyads and small communities are often unavailable in the context of trusting an institution or branch of government. Establishing trust on this larger social scale therefore requires new or modified mechanisms. In the third section of the paper, we recommend three policies that – we argue – tend to make institutions more trustworthy and to reliably signal that trustworthiness to the public. First, they should ensure that their decision-making processes are as open and transparent as possible. Second, they should make efforts to engage stakeholders in dialogue with decision-makers such as managers, members of the C-Suite, and highly-placed policy-makers. Third, they should foster diversity – gender, ethnicity, age, socioeconomic background, disability, etc. – in their workforce at all levels, but especially in management and positions of power. We conclude by discussing the warrant for distrust in institutions that do not adopt these policies, which we contend is especially pertinent for people who belong to groups that have historically faced (and in many cases still do face) oppression. (shrink)
The active debate about the return of incidental or secondary findings in research has primarily focused on return to research participants, or in some cases, family members. Particular attention has been paid to return of genomic findings. Yet, research may generate other types of findings that warrant consideration for return, including findings related to the pathology of donated biospecimens. In the case of deceased biospecimen donors who are also organ and/or tissue transplant donors, pathology incidental findings may be relevant not (...) to family members, but to potential organ or tissue transplant recipients. This paper will describe the ethical implications of pathology incidental findings in the Genotype-Tissue Expression project, the process for developing a consensus approach as to if/when such findings should be returned, possible implications for other research projects collecting postmortem tissues and how the scenario encountered in GTEx fits into the larger return of results/incidental findings debate. (shrink)
Research in basic and clinical neuroscience of music conducted over the past decades has begun to uncover music’s high potential as a tool for rehabilitation. Advances in our understanding of how music engages parallel brain networks underpinning sensory and motor processes, arousal, reward, and affective regulation, have laid a sound neuroscientific foundation for the development of theory-driven music interventions that have been systematically tested in clinical settings. Of particular significance in the context of motor rehabilitation is the notion that musical (...) rhythms can entrain movement patterns in patients with movement-related disorders, serving as a continuous time reference that can help regulate movement timing and pace. To date, a significant number of clinical and experimental studies have tested the application of rhythm- and music-based interventions to improve motor functions following central nervous injury and/or degeneration. The goal of this review is to appraise the current state of knowledge on the effectiveness of music and rhythm to modulate movement spatiotemporal patterns and restore motor function. By organizing and providing a critical appraisal of a large body of research, we hope to provide a revised framework for future research on the effectiveness of rhythm- and music-based interventions to restore and train motor function. (shrink)
Engineering ethics calls the attention of engineers to professional codes of ethical responsibility and personal values, but the practice of ethics in corporate settings can be more complex than either of these. Corporations too have cultures that often include corporate social responsibility practices and policies, but few discussions of engineering ethics make any explicit reference to CSR. This article proposes critical attention to CSR and role ethics as an opportunity to help prepare engineers to think through the ethics of their (...) professional practice. After a brief overview of the evolution of social responsibility within engineering ethics in the United States, this article shares empirical research with practicing engineers in the mining and energy industries to explore how their formal ethics training did and did not prepare them to grapple with the ethical dimensions of their professional practice. It then illustrates the ways in which these dilemmas and the strategies employed for navigating them are framed within CSR policies and practices and resonate more strongly with role ethics rather than ethical theory as currently taught in most US engineering programs. The article concludes that engineering ethics teaching and learning would benefit from explicitly incorporating critical discussions of role ethics and CSR. (shrink)
In his reply to our paper Marangudakis raises important points regarding: (1) the measurement of environmental values; and (2) potential risks of deep ecological views to human welfare. We definitely agree that a more rigorous approach to the measurement of environmental values is needed. While the extent of belief in deep ecology remains an open question, we believe Marangudakis may be overly simplifying deep ecology and, for that matter, Christian world views.
Suppose you want to live a happy life. Who should you turn to for advice? We normally think that we know best about our own happiness. But recent work in psychology and neuroscience suggests that we are often mistaken about our own natures, and that sometimes scientists know us better than we know ourselves. Does this mean that to live a happy life we should ask scientists for advice rather than relying on our introspection? In what follows, we highlight ways (...) in which the science of happiness could help us live happy lives, but we also argue that, in other ways, our navel gazing will remain indispensable. (shrink)
Plagiarism is a prevalent form of academic dishonesty in the undergraduate instructional context. Although students engage in plagiarism with some frequency, instructors often do little to help students understand the significance of plagiarism or to create assignments that reduce its likelihood. This study reports survey, coding, and TurnItIn software results from an evaluation of an instructional activity designed to help students improve their understanding of plagiarism, the consequences of plagiarizing, strategies to help them engage in ethical writing, and key citation (...) elements. Results indicate students had a greater understanding of plagiarism, increased efficacy, and fewer instances of plagiarism as determined by TurnItIn plagiarism software after exposure to an instructional activity on plagiarism. Not surprisingly, when instructors prioritize academic honesty in their classrooms, train students on how to integrate others’ works, cite sources appropriately, and use plagiarism detection software, students are less likely to plagiarize. The discussion includes suggestions for instructors to help them create a plagiarism-free environment. (shrink)
Human cooperation is highly unusual. We live in large groups composed mostly of non-relatives. Evolutionists have proposed a number of explanations for this pattern, including cultural group selection and extensions of more general processes such as reciprocity, kin selection, and multi-level selection acting on genes. Evolutionary processes are consilient; they affect several different empirical domains, such as patterns of behavior and the proximal drivers of that behavior. In this target article, we sketch the evidence from five domains that bear on (...) the explanatory adequacy of cultural group selection and competing hypotheses to explain human cooperation. Does cultural transmission constitute an inheritance system that can evolve in a Darwinian fashion? Are the norms that underpin institutions among the cultural traits so transmitted? Do we observe sufficient variation at the level of groups of considerable size for group selection to be a plausible process? Do human groups compete, and do success and failure in competition depend upon cultural variation? Do we observe adaptations for cooperation in humans that most plausibly arose by cultural group selection? If the answer to one of these questions is “no,” then we must look to other hypotheses. We present evidence, including quantitative evidence, that the answer to all of the questions is “yes” and argue that we must take the cultural group selection hypothesis seriously. If culturally transmitted systems of rules that limit individual deviance organize cooperation in human societies, then it is not clear that any extant alternative to cultural group selection can be a complete explanation. (shrink)